resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Pain Is Only a Piece of the Puzzle
More often than not, when a patient presents to the office, it is for a pain complaint: headache, neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel, etc.
Older Patients, Stroke Risk and Manipulation
The first population-based study in the United States to evaluate stroke risk following spinal manipulation – and the first involving older adults – suggests that "[c]hiropractic cervical spine manipulation is unlikely to cause stroke in patients aged 66 to 99 years with neck pain.
Will You Be an Amplifer or a Mute?
These times are changing, and changing quickly. There have been many challenges to this profession throughout the past few years. The challenge is to talk, then talk and talk some more about this medicine.
Striking a Blow to the Medical Monopoly
The U.S. Supreme Court has issued a landmark ruling in North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners v Federal Trade Commission.
TCM Congress in Rothenburg is Largest in Western World
In the medieval town of Rothenburg, deep set within the Bavarian countryside in Southern Germany, the TCM Kongress Rothenburg each year draws around 1.200 participants from more than 40 different countries to attend the biggest TCM conference in the Western world.
God and the Chiropractor
My wife went to church last Wednesday night and brought home a CD of the pastor's message. As she handed it to me, she said, "You should listen to this; you'll like it." Our family regularly goes to church and our faith plays a major role in our lives.
Synergy Doesn't Happen in Silos: Acupuncture in Hospitals and Other Healthcare Settings
As acupuncture and traditional East Asian medicine continue to intersect and integrate with biomedical approaches, the conversation about integration expands and becomes richer.
A Well-Kept Secret: 5 Element Acupuncture, Part II
Supervising acupuncture interns at a TCM college, it has always struck me how funny it is to hear the clinic manager tell the patients that the Five Element clinic specializes in treating emotions, as if patients with physical pain have no emotions!
Converting More Patients to Your Practice
In 2013 and 2014, the theme was "the money is in the list." This meant that if you had a big email list, you were really making some "cha-ching." Unfortunately, having thousands of emails doesn't equate to thousands of dollars in profit.
There Really is No Room for Sexism
Recently, Matteo* (a transgender male) approached me during a break in an advanced shiatsu class in Berlin where he was one of two men in a group of 20 women. "Pamela. Don't forget to remind the translator to include male endings."
The Way We Are Designed: A Conversation with Gil Hedley, PhD
I was first introduced to the work of Gil Hedley by Tom DiFerdinando. He gifted me Gil's DVD series.
The Need for a New Medical Model: A Challenge for Biopsychosocial and Ecopsychologica Medicine
Chinese medicine speaks of alignment between humans, heaven and earth. It is a complex view with a focus upon relationship. These are comprehensive ideas with no specific terms in contemporary medical practice.
Treating GERD and Incontinence: Focus on Trigger Points
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is defined as the regurgitation of stomach acid in the esophagus. Previously, it was thought that GERD was caused by a hiatal hernia, but recent trials suggest the cause is an inability of the hiatal sphincter to contract normally.
What Do You Know About Physician Compare?
Physician Compare is a website that allows consumers to search for and obtain information about physicians and other health care professionals who provide Medicare services.
News in Brief
ACA Exec. Vice President Out, Acting EVP In; F4CP Executive Director Retires; New ED Named.
An Excerpt from TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics
This excerpt is reprinted with permission from Jamie Wu. TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics was released in 2014 by People's Medical Publishing House.
Keep Seniors Safe: Age-Proofing the Home
I want to give Dr. Claudia Anrig kudos for her Dec. 1, 2014 column, which highlighted safety issues youngsters might encounter in the home.
Viewpoints: Massage Reduces Nonspecific Shoulder Pain, Improves Function
While seemingly universal, pain and stiffness in the shoulders can be a significant cause of disability. Often a pain that does not go away on its own, shoulder complaints tend to linger, sometimes for 12 months or longer.
How We Can Help the Injured Brain
The majority of patients with mild traumatic brain injuries recover within seven to 10 days. If concussion signs and symptoms continue beyond seven days, the diagnosis changes from acute concussion to post-concussion syndrome.
The Dietary Supplement Research Dilemma
I do not care what the truth is, one way or another; I just want to know it. And when it comes to dietary supplements, the truth can be hard to find for a number of reasons.
Recreational Cannabis Use and TCM
Many people are drawn to cannabis for its effects physically, mentally and emotionally. Medically, cannabis has some legitimate uses, however the scope of this article is limited to the recreational use of cannabis.
Joint Supplements for Athletes (Part 2)
A fairly recent discovery in nutrition supplemental medicine has proven to be a breakthrough in maintaining athletic joint health. Research suggests a combination of undenatured type-II collagen and tetrahydro-iso-alpha acids helps revitalize joint function and performance in athletes.
Treating Beyond Pain
More often than not, when a patient presents to the office, it is for a pain complaint. Headache, neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel... The pain is often the focus of the patient's mindset, and they don't often have any thought of what comes after the pain.
March, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 03
The Evils of Money
By Cliff Korn, BS, LMT, NCTMB
Why do some massage therapists shun money? I've been fortunate to be on the table of some of the best therapists - ones who could work magic! In almost any other profession, these would be some of the wealthiest people in their communities, but they are simply "regular folk" who don't raise the eyebrows of the bank tellers when they make their deposits.Why do so many massage therapists think that they can't raise rates, or that asking to be compensated for a missed appointment is so awful? Why don't they think it's okay to ask for more money if they've worked past the agreed-upon length of time?
Many young people are entering the profession now, some because of the "big money opportunity." They see a short amount of study time and jumping through a few hoops as the fast track to making $60, $75 or $100 per hour! Right! We all know the fallacy in that dream; a 40-hour week at our billable hourly rate just isn't possible. Most massage therapists I know dread doing six hours of actual massage per day, let alone eight. It's too much hard work for their bodies to sustain. Setting aside the reality of the numbers, what happens to people while in massage school that turns them from "show me the money" therapists into "this is a calling; wouldn't it be wonderful if money didn't get in the way" therapists or "I'm not worthy of accepting money for this practice" therapists? Many of us are afraid to demand compensation commensurate with the derived benefits of our patients and clients.
I was recently part of a panel discussion on practice building and the attainment of "success" by massage therapists. I was pleased to be on a panel of peers whom I admire for their abilities and accomplishments. While the discussion went in many different directions, one item kept repeating itself over and over: Massage therapists frequently fail to meet their practice and financial goals because they don't treat it as a business. They don't learn the skills to develop and execute a business plan. It's as though our ability to please has made us scared of money! A good friend of mine (who was also involved in the panel discussion) said he found this problem so prevalent that he has students in his workshops pass a $50 or $100 bill back and forth, and practice saying, "Thank you for the money!" The public is starting to catch on to how important we are to them! Isn't it time we caught up to what they already know? We are worthy! I love it now when I meet new people and tell them I am a massage therapist. I no longer get the wide-eyed stare or snicker. Now the typical response is, "Wow, that's neat!"
It's acceptable for therapists just out of school and not confident in their skills to charge less than the market price; however, those of us with track records of meeting client expectations should proudly hold our heads high as we share space with other businesses. People who get their hair done don't expect to get highlights for free; people dining out expect an occasional increase in menu price and to pay for the wine!
Why, then, should a client who arrives in discomfort leave with a free tube of BioFreeze, instead of buying it? Why should a client, who books for a relaxation massage and then mentions headaches and hip pain (which calls for us to draw upon more advanced skills and methods), expect to pay the same price? Likewise, a client who mentions shoulder or neck pain at the end of the massage and causes us to go over on time should pay an additional fee. Why do we think our businesses are any less worthy of profit than the ones we frequent on a daily basis? Money is nothing more than a medium exchange of energy. We don't "get" it; we "earn" it!
It's time we conducted a realistic self-analysis. We need to rethink our importance and our position, and what that means for the well being of society. I don't have the answers to all of the questions I've asked here, but I do know that massage therapists should be prospering more than they are. This year, after you have taken those continuing-education classes you have planned, invest in a business course "just for you!" I'm really looking forward to the day when that bank teller's eyebrows go way up!
Thanks for listening!
Massage Today encourages letters to the editor to discuss matters relating to the publication's content. Letters may be published in a future issue of Massage Today. Please send all correspondence by e-mail to , or by regular mail to:
Former editor of Massage Today, Cliff is owner of Windham Health Center Neuromuscular Therapy LLC. He is nationally certified in therapeutic massage & bodywork and is licensed as a massage therapist by the states of New Hampshire and Florida. Cliff is a member of the International Association of Healthcare Practitioners; a professional member and past president of the New Hampshire chapter of the American Massage Therapy Association; a certified member of the Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals, Inc.; and a past chairman of the board of directors of the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork.
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